Associate Vice Chancellor for Research receives Can-Am Civil Engineering Amity Award

by Matt Jardin  |   

UAA Associate Vice Chancellor for Research Aaron Dotson
UAA Associate Vice Chancellor for Research Aaron Dotson (Photo by James Evans / University of Alaska Anchorage)

In early November, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) honored UAA Associate Vice Chancellor for Research Aaron Dotson, Ph.D., P.E., M.ASCE, with the 2020 Can-Am Civil Engineering Amity Award. Dotson’s accolade commemorates an academic and research career dedicated to water and wastewater treatment specializing in cold region processes with small, remote systems typical of Alaska Bush communities.

“I am honored to receive the ASCE Can-Am Civil Engineering Amity Award,” thanked Dotson. “Since moving to Alaska in 2010, I have focused my research on northern and cold climate engineering challenges that transcend borders across the circumpolar north. While often under-supported due to the lower population density, I firmly believe that northern innovations can change the lives in our local communities and those located further south. I have taken pride in developing strong Canadian partnerships as they bring northern experiential knowledge and compassion toward challenges facing Alaska.”

Spanning more than a decade, Dotson’s various research projects include practical applications of advanced wastewater treatment, utilization and treatment of industrial wastewater, innovative technologies to provide high-quality water to small communities, the occurrence and source tracking of triazoles in urban cold climates, using copper isotopes to evaluate corrosion, implementing open-source remote sensors for small and developing communities, and the development of an integrated UV/ceramic membrane treatment technology. 

More recently, his active related research includes the development of an on-site water reuse system as part of the Alaska Water Sewer Challenge, and the assessment of household water use patterns in Alaska's rural communities.

Dotson’s service to ASCE includes serving as chair of the ASCE Cold Regions Engineering Division (CRED), Environment and Public Health Committee, where he is leading the efforts to rewrite the CRED bestseller Cold Regions Utilities Monograph. In this effort, he has recruited and worked with engineers from Alberta, British Columbia, the Yukon and Northwest Territories to ensure that accepted practices for the design of water and wastewater systems are available for dissemination to cold region communities. 

The Can-Am Civil Engineering Amity Award is given to a member of ASCE or the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers for either a specific instance that has yielded lasting benefits or an exemplary career that has contributed to the amity of the United States and Canada.

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